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Brewes Coat of Arms Meaning

The three main devices (symbols) in the Brewes blazon are the lion rampant, cross crosslet and mascle. The three main tinctures (colors) are gules, azure and or .

Gules, the heraldic colour red is very popular, sometimes said to represent “Military Fortitude and Magnanimity”1. It is usually abbreviated as gu and in the days before colour printing was shown in a system known as hatching by vertical lines 2. Although it may look like a French word it is normally pronounced with a hard “g” and may be derived either from the Latin gula (throat) or Arabic gule (rose).3

The bright, strong blue color in Heraldry is known in English as azure, and similarly in other European languages – azul in Spanish, azurro in Italian and azur in French. The word has its roots in the Arabic word lazura, also the source of the name of the precious stone lapis lazuli 4. Despite this, those heralds who liked to associate colours with jewels chose instead to describe blue as Sapphire. According to Wade, the use of this colour symbolises “Loyalty and Truth” 5.

The bright yellow colour frequently found in coats of arms is known to heralds as Or, or sometimes simply as Gold.6. Along with, argent, or silver it forms the two “metals” of heraldry – one of the guidelines of heraldic design is that silver objects should not be placed upon gold fields and vice versa 7. The yellow colour is often associated with the Sun, and the zodiacal sign of Leo.8.

There can be no animal more clearly associated with Heraldry than the lion, majestic King of the Beasts. Originally it appeared only in one pose, erect, on one paw, with the others raised 9 but such was the popularity of this figure, and the need to distinguish arms from each other, that it soon came to be shown in an enormous range of forms 10. The lion rampant is an example of these modified form, and any family would be proud to have such a noble creature displayed on their arms. Rampant is the default attitude of the lion, raised on its hind legs, facing to the dexter and with front paws extended in a fearsome and powerful pose.

No other symbol appearing in heraldry is subject to as much variation as the cross 11. Mediaeval Europe was a deeply religious and Christian and many of the nobility wanted to show their devotion by adopting the symbol of the cross as part of the arms. Since no two arms could be identical there arose many variants of the cross. The cross crosslet is one of these, being symetrical both vertically and horizontally and having an additional cross bar on each arm. 12 Wade suggests that these additional crossing signify “the fourfold mystery of the Cross”. 13

The mascle is a close relative of the lozenge or diamond shape, but with the centre cut away revealing the background underneath. 14. Guillim, writing in the 17th century reckoned the mascle to represent the mesh of a net, being the biblical symbol for “persuasion, whereby men are induced to virtue and verity”. 15

Origin, Meaning, Family History and Brewes Coat of Arms and Family Crest

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Blazons & Genealogy Notes

1) (Buckinghamshire). Ar. semee of crosses crosslet a lion ramp. gu. crowned or.
2) (Gloucestershire). Or, semee of crosses crosslet a lion ramp. sa.
3) (Visit, co. Notts, 1569 and 1614). Az. semee of crosses crosslet or, a lion ramp. charged on the shoulder with a fleur-de-lis gu.
4) Erm. a cross lozengy gu.
5) Az. a lion ramp. betw. seven crosslets fitchee ar.
6) Gu. three chev. and a mullet in the dexter corner or, within a bordure engr. az.
7) Az. three bars vaire erm. and gu.
8) Barry of six erm. gu. and az.
9) Gu. a saltire betw. four crosses crosslet or.
10) (Huntingdonshire). Az. a saltire and chief or.
11) Chequy or and az. an inescutcheon ar. charged with a bend gu.
12) Gu. a saltire ar. a chief indented point in point of the first and second.
13) Ar. a cross masculy gu. Crest—Out of a ducal coronet or, a cock’s head ppr.
14) Ar. a cross masculy gu. Crest—Out of a ducal coronet or, a cock’s head ppr.
15) (Wagford, co. Buckingham). Az. semee of crosslets a lion ramp. or.
16) (Huntingdonshire). Az. a saltire and chief or.
17) (Norfolk, temp. Edward III.). Erm. (another, ar.) a lion ramp. gu. tail forked.
18) (Suffolk). Ar. semee of crosslets, and a lion ramp. gu. crowned or.
19) Ar. a cross engr. or.
20) Az. crusily and a lion ramp. crowned or. Crest—A lion pass. az.
21) Quarterly, indented sa. and ar.
22) Or, a fesse and chief gu.
23) Gu. a saltire ar. (another, or). Crest—A demi Hercules clothed with a skin, holding over the shoulder a club ppr.
24) Gu. a saltire engr. ar. and chief indented point in point of the first and second.
25) Ar. an inescutcheon, within a double tressure flory counterflory, gu.
26) Chequy or and az. an inescutcheon ar. charged with a bend gu.

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References

  • 1 The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P36
  • 2 Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P52
  • 3 A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1847, P154
  • 4 A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Azure
  • 5 The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P36
  • 6 Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 27
  • 7 A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P85
  • 8 Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P53
  • 9 Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 64
  • 10 Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P136-141
  • 11 Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 47
  • 12 A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Cross Crosslet
  • 13 The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P103
  • 14 A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Mascle
  • 15 A Display of Heraldry, J. Guillim, Blome, London, 1679, P234